The Mallorca


Bleak Christmas in store for hoteliers

With beds going for as little as 20 euros a night some hotels are considering closing for the winter The low season always sees a fall in tourist numbers but this season is shaping up to be worse than most, according to a report in the Diario de Mallorca. So worrying is the situation that the president of the hoteliers in Playa de Palma, Francisco Marin, said that “Rooms are being sold for practically any price just to maintain some level of occupancy.”

Playa de Palma is one of the destinations most in demand at this time of year but this time the hotels claim they are suffering from the effects of recession with Marin saying that “this year is a little worse [than normal]“. “Neither is there expected to be any significant pickup over Christmas,” he says. “The British and the Germans are not coming and it looks like it will stay that way for the next few months and so prices have been slashed just so we can fill some beds.” Marin believes that hotel occupation during the winter months is normally between 65 and 70 percent of capacity, whereas currently it stands at around 40 to 50 percent. A major employer in the area, the chairman of the Mac hotel chain Miguel Amengual has indicated that his hotels may have to close and reopen in January, but with rates that barely cover the wages of the staff. Other sources claim that the average price of each bed stands at 28 to 30 euros for half board, and from this figure must be deducted the advance sales for cutbacks being made by tour operators, so that the final fee received is more like 20 euros. (WC)